Connecticut Legalizes Gay Marriage
October 17, 2008
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HARTFORD–On Friday, Oct. 10, the Connecticut Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage, marking Connecticut the third state in the country to do so, following Massachusetts and California.
The ruling stated that “interpreting our state constitutional provisions in accordance with firmly established equal protection principles leads inevitably to the conclusion that gay persons are entitled to marry the otherwise qualified same sex partner of their choice.”
“To decide otherwise would require us to apply one set of constitutional principles to gay persons and another to all others. The guarantee of equal protection under the law, and our obligation to uphold that command, forbids us from doing so. In accordance with these state constitutional requirements, same sex couples cannot be denied the freedom to marry.”
Three years ago, the state of Connecticut began allowing civil unions. Although civil unions are intended to be marriage without the same name, Connecticut Legislature later tabled a bill allowing marriage.
But eight gay couples sued the state, arguing that civil unions were not equal to marriage and that the state Constitution guaranteed them equal treatment.
A representative of Connecticut’s commissioner of public health said he does not know when the state might start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.